Ten lucky families are community heroes as a result of their participation in the Tom's of Maine "Be a Tooth Fairy Hero" initiative, which asked parents and children nationwide to help raise awareness about the need for greater access to dental care. Each of the ten winning entries earned $10,000 for a non-profit dental clinic in their state and a Tom's of Maine natural toothpaste donation for their school. In total, the Dental Health for All™ (DHFA) program is distributing over 5,000 tubes of toothpaste and $100,000 to help increase access to quality dental care for people in need.
"Our 'Be a Tooth Fairy Hero' initiative gave families the opportunity to help those in need with funding for a non-profit dental clinic in their state. We also encouraged kids to share their artistic interpretations of the tooth fairy," said Susan Dewhirst public relations and goodness manager at Tom's of Maine. "Every family that entered is remarkable for taking the time to do something to benefit so many others."
Below are the ten randomly chosen winners along with the clinic that will receive a donation on their behalf:
1. Tyler - Tujunga, Calif.
Valley Community Clinic – North Hollywood, Calif.
"So many people do not understand the importance of oral health in one's overall physical well-being. We are so grateful to little Tyler from our community who cared enough to send his Tooth Fairy drawing to help a local non-profit dental center. This funding will provide dental exams, cleaning, and oral health education for 1,000 men, women and children who would otherwise go without care." – Judi Rose, Vice President and Chief Development Officer, Valley Community Clinic
2. Kevin - Jacksonville, Fla.
The Sulzbacher Center – Jacksonville, Fla.
"We are so grateful to the young man from Jacksonville who entered the Tom's of Maine promotion. This gift could not have come at a better time. We will put it to good use in our dental clinic where we desperately need two new wall-mounted x-ray machines." – Cindy Funkhouser, President and CEO, The Sulzbacher Center
3. Haley - Blairsville, Ga.
Blue Ridge Dental, part of Georgia Mountains Health – Blue Ridge, Ga.
"Words cannot describe how grateful we are. This child has not just helped our office; this child has given to the community! These monetary funds will go toward helping many people in our surrounding area by providing them with much needed dental care. Such a gift as this is priceless!" – Jessica Kirtley, Dental Supervisor, Georgia Mountains Health Dental Services, Inc.
4. Karri - Crown Point, Ind.
Gary Community Health Center, part of Community HealthNet – Gary, Ind.
"Community HealthNet would like to extend a resounding congratulation to the young person in our community that is the winner of the 2013 Tooth Fairy Hero initiative. Community HealthNet shares this young person's commitment and dedication to raising awareness on how to obtain quality dental care in our neighborhoods." – Janet Seabrook, MD, CEO, Gary Community Health Center
5. Thomas - Radcliff, Ky.
Family Health Center - Southwest – Louisville, Ky.
"I would like to thank Thomas for bringing about such a wonderful and unexpected gift from Tom's of Maine to Family Health Centers and our community! The Dental Health for All funds will be used to provide much needed oral health services to low-income and uninsured adults and children at our evening dental clinics." – Bart Irwin, Assistant Director, Family Health Centers, Inc.
6. Maya - Yarmouth, Maine
Health Care for the Homeless, part of the Portland Public Health Division – Portland, Maine
"Thanks to Maya for submitting a drawing to the Tooth Fairy Hero program. Because of you and Tom's of Maine's generosity, we will be able to increase the level of care we can extend to our clients by purchasing an oral surgery unit. We are grateful to Tom's of Maine for their help in providing oral health services to a most needy population." – Martha Barnes, RDH, Adult Oral Health Program Coordinator, Health Care for the Homeless
7. Bridget - Hopkinton, Mass.
Edward M. Kennedy Community Health Center – Framingham, Mass.
"I would like to offer our sincere thanks to Bridget. We feel like we have our very own Tooth Fairy! This generous donation from Tom's of Maine will support the much needed replacement of aging dental equipment. It is amazing what magic can happen when a community comes together!" – Toni McGuire, RN MPH, President and CEO, Edward M. Kennedy Community Health Center
8. Caiden - Johnstown, Ohio
Columbus Public Health Dental Clinic, part of Columbus Neighborhood Health Center, Inc. – Columbus, Ohio
"Columbus Neighborhood Health Center, Inc. is very lucky to have a Tooth Fairy Hero. Caiden used his art to help other local children receive dental care and toothpaste through the Tom's of Maine Dental Health for All program. He is an excellent example that simple, thoughtful actions can have a big impact on the people around you. Thank you for being our hero. We will use the funding to purchase equipment, enabling us to continue to provide quality dental care for the underserved." – Deani Deskins-Knebel, DDS, Dental Director, Columbus Neighborhood Health Center, Inc.
9. Alyssa - Jenks, Okla.
Morton Midtown Clinic, part of Morton Comprehensive Health Services – Tulsa, Okla.
"We are proud that young people in our community are realizing the importance of maintaining healthy lifestyles and quality of life habits. If we can continue to impact students today, then we will be able to have a greater impact tomorrow in establishing healthier and longer lives for all. Morton looks forward to continuing to reach and to teach everyone, young and old, about better living." – John M. Silva, CEO, Morton Comprehensive Health Services
10. Riley - Bent Mountain, Va.
Craig County Dental Center, part of Monroe Health Center – New Castle, Va.
"We take pride in improving the smiles of our children and would like to thank the children in our area for recognizing the importance of good dental health and hygiene. The generous donation from Tom's of Maine will be used to enhance the school-based program, which brings comprehensive dental care to the students of Craig County public schools, and many of those students would not otherwise receive care. Thanks for helping us make a difference in our community!" – Michelle Ballard, Chief Operations Officer, Monroe Health Centers
Tom's of Maine created its Dental Health for All program more than 10 years ago as part of its steadfast commitment to healthy and human goodness, including helping the 16.5 million children who go without dental care each year.✶ To date, Dental Health for All has helped make 200,000 additional patient visits possible with $1 million in funding to more than 30 school and community-based dental clinics.
✶ 2011 study by the Pew Center on the States
About Tom's of Maine
is a leading manufacturer of natural and environmentally-friendly personal care products, including natural adult and kids toothpaste, alcohol–free mouthwash, natural dental floss, natural deodorant and antiperspirant and natural bar soap. Founded in 1970 in Kennebunk, Maine, the company is inspired by and committed to sustainable business practices as well as supporting people and communities. Each year, Tom's of Maine gives 10% of its profits back to organizations that support healthy, human, and environmental goodness and encourages employees to use 5% (12 days) of employee time to volunteer. Tom's of Maine products are vegan, Kosher, Halal-certified and all packaging is recyclable through a partnership with upcycling leader TerraCycle or participating municipalities. Visit online at http://www.tomsofmaine.com/ or at http://www.facebook.com/TomsofMaine. TOM’s products are also available at http://www.tomsofmainestore.com